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To Get Beyond Generalisations: Educational Sciences as a Research on Performative Practices
Linnaeus University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Education. (Tacit Dimensions of Pedagogy ; SITE)
2015 (English)In: Abstract book. NERA 2015, Marketisation and differentiation in education.: 43rd Annual Congress of the Nordic Educational Research Association (NERA), Gothenburg, March 4-6, 2015, 2015Conference paper, Abstract (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

The most applied reference sciences in terms of formal education are the Curriculum Studies in the Anglo-American language area, and Didactics in the German-Scandinavian language area (cp. Hudson & Meyer 2011). Besides that there is, mostly in the French context, a tendency to strengthen rather the diverse disciplines of domain specific knowledge at the expense of pedagogy. In this contribution I will argue for a perspective that came up within the Educational Sciences: the practice-approach. In special, I will unfold the performativity-theoretical interpretation of a research on practices.

  1. 1.         
  2. 2.        4. Theoretical and methodology framework

Within Didactics for a long time “Bildung”, that is to say the general idea of a personality acquiring knowledge, and, in doing so, developing social and cultural responsibility, has been in the focus of education. Today moreover all forms of formal and informal learning, also the professional formation of all kinds, are interpreted as a “development of competences” specified as the attainment of practical knowledge.

There is thus a kind of paradigm shift, in which the idea of “Bildung” and, with it, Didactics is successively put aside.

However, I regard neither “Bildung” nor competences as the very core of pedagogy. Pedagogy is moreover ruled by resp. is practices.

While “Bildung” and the “development of competences” are theoretical and generalising definitions of education, it is rather obvious the pedagogical fields are ruled by practices. Practices can be theoretically grasped or described as “Bildung”, or as a “development of competences” etc. Thus, in the different pedagogical fields “gebildete” and “ungebildete” as well as competent and incompetent practices are of importance. That is to say, e.g. not-learning as well as learning is an integral part of pedagogy and should not be forgotten or overshadowed by the presuppositions of “Bildung” or “competences”. The performative approach will serve to bring the individual and differentiating perspective into the practice research. Wulff (1998, p.219f.) writes: "In a first step, the performative is defined as an activity that brings up the horizons of meaning by itself"; and Wulf & Zirfas (2007, p.18) point out: "Performative realities are flat realities, as they focus primarily on the events and their effects, and they are rich realities, because they let the events come into view".

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Keyword [en]
Practice research, performativity, defintions of pedagogy
National Category
Educational Sciences
Research subject
Pedagogics and Educational Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:lnu:diva-43606OAI: diva2:816488
NERA 2015, 43rd Annual Congress of the Nordic Educational Research Association (NERA), Gothenburg, March 4-6, 2015
Tacit Dimensions of Pedagogy
Available from: 2015-06-03 Created: 2015-06-03 Last updated: 2016-09-12Bibliographically approved

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